Minors beat St David's to reach Final
Three early Crokes wides preceded Kevin O’Loughlin’s opening score, a point from a 55 metre free. A minute later brother Rob fed Kevin who passed on for Barry O’Rorke to raise a white flag. The David’s centre forward won the puck out and pointed. Sixty seconds on Ronan Walsh hand passed to Mark Coughlan. The centre forward found Brian Hanamy who passed to Kevin O’Loughlin and the net billowed. David’s replied with a pointed free. Crokes then strung three overs together from Kevin O’Loughlin, Niall Butler and Conor Clinton. A wide from a Kevin O’Loughlin free followed before the northsiders ran off three points together, all from frees, to bring it to 1-5 to 0-5 by the seventeenth minute. From the puck out following the last of these Conor Clinton sent over an inspirational point. However within two minutes Davids goaled and then followed with a minor to put the sides on level terms, 1-6 all.
In the twenty third minute good work from William McEvoy set Clinton up for his second. Kevin O’Loughlin pointed a free and in the twenty eight minute Clinton got his third of the half. Just before half time a Davids converted penalty restored parity. The puck out was won by Barra O’Leidhin who sent on to O’Rorke and the latter brought it to 1-11 to 2-6 at the interval.
With the wind not a factor, on a pitch in very good shape, it was all to play for. A good fetch, turn and finish by full forward Brian Hanamy raised a green flag and gave Crokes a tonic start. Davids responded with a point from a free. Mark Coughlan replied in kind. Conor Clinton won the puck out and repeated the dose. Davids answered with two pointed frees. Clinton pointed again only for a Davids free to nullify his effort. Then sublime combination involving Barry O’Rorke, Sean McGrath and Kevin O’Loughlin, with the most delicate of flicks, set up Mark Coughlan for his second point. A Davids point from a free followed.
In the forty seventh minute Barry O’Rorke fetched a good ball, carried and pointed. Four minutes on Davids, again from a free, pegged it back to 2-16 to 2-11. Within sixty seconds Hanamy struck for his second goal giving Crokes a more comfortable seven point gap. The sides next exchanged points, the Crokes effort from a Kevin O’Loughlin free. In the remaining minutes Davids pressure yielded two points from frees and forced Crokes into one goal line clearance to leave it 3-17 to 2-14 at the long whistle
Victory sets Crokes up for a county final clash with Na Fianna, who accounted for championship favorites, Cuala, in the county final.
R Tighe, S McNicholas, R O’Carroll, G McMorrow, R Walsh, W McEvoy, R O’Loughlin, E Culligan, C Clinton (0-6), B O’Leidhin, M Coughlan (0-2), N Butler (0-1), K O’Loughlin (1-4, f 0-3, pen 1-0), B Hanamy (2-0), B O’Rorke (0-4). Subs: S McGrath B O’Leidhin, P Tighe for S McNicholas, O Turley, N Mulligan, K Motherway, C Carolan, D Monnelly, C Cunningham, C Caulfield, D Brennan, K Noctor, A Whelan and E O’Sullivan